Wagner mercenary leader claims effectiveness is why he was stopped from recruiting convicts

Vladimir Putin and Yevgeny Prigozhin - Image Russian Federation

Yevgeny Prigozhin, the owner of the Wagner mercenary group, has said why he believes he was stopped from recruiting convicts.

Prigozhin confirms that one of the main reasons is opposition from within the military according to the Ukrainian news service Pravda. Citing sources at news outlet 7×7 on Tuesday, February 14, the response came after his assistance was sought in Sverdlovsk, a Russian-occupied city in Luhansk Oblast.

In his response to the request, Prigozhin said he could not help as he had been ousted. He gave the following reasons.

  1. “Excessively high efficiency of task performance, which puts a certain number of authorised persons in an uncomfortable position, as well as discredits the work of some units in other areas of the front. [Their – ed.] logic: ‘Too bold for the army and harmful, they don’t let you sit it out in a hideout.’”
  2. “Wagner Group uses convicts not as convicts, but as equal fighters, which causes irritation of the tightly-knit elite.”
  3. “A certain number of pro-war functionaries decided that if they recruited convicts, they would be able to become famous as the Wagner Group.”

The statements from the Wagner man contradict those reported previously although there is no doubt that not everyone in the Russian military leadership is a fan.

Other reports have suggested that he as making a push for power and that did not sit well with the ruling elite.

Reports by both Russian, Ukrainian and the international intelligence community also suggest some of his claims to be false, particularly with regard to the treatment of the convicts recruited by the Wagner group.

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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com.